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Intimidation and aggression are serious problems faced by everyone involved in public debate, and social media platforms should take more responsibility to ensure online security, the Dutch Human Rights Council said. The University of Rechten van der Mens said in its latest annual report.

Freedom of speech is the main theme of this year’s report, which is under increasing pressure, said Jacobin Gir. “The debate is increasingly being replaced by online and offline screaming matches, insults and intimidation, or physical violence.”

Journalists, politicians, experts, scholars, columnists and bloggers are all increasingly targeted, “this affects us all,” she said.

Natural Minister Christianne van der Wol and virologist Marion Coupmans are one of the two recent victims. Andreas Foss, a member of the government’s Coronavirus Task Force, talked about “anonymous letters cut from newspapers,” but anti-Zwarte Pieto activist Jeffrey Afrije and his family. Was threatened with death.

Women, in particular, are not only faced with gender-related threats, including sexist and derogatory comments, but are also exposed to the threat of sexual violence.


The council said the government has taken some steps to reduce attacks on journalists and politicians and is working on further plans to protect others. In addition, the Chamber of Commerce has finally agreed to remove the address from some of its public registries, and legislation has been introduced prohibiting the disclosure of people’s addresses online without permission.

At the same time, the council said online companies such as Meta and Twitter should work harder to tackle the call for hatred and violence online.

We have issued a series of recommendations to the government, from encouraging police to prioritize, tracking threatening people, and doing more to address false information online. ..

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